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Restaurant operators measure everything from guest experience to drive-thru speed and use these metrics to fine-tune operations, save on expenses, and drive sales. Yet while the restaurant industry spends $26–27 million annually on repairs and maintenance (R&M) for facilities and equipment, few brands pay the same attention to R&M as other critical operations.

When equipment and facilities do eventually break down—often causing major service disruptions, a worse guest experience, and lost sales—restaurant managers are often left scrambling to troubleshoot broken equipment, find workarounds, or hire and manage vendors themselves while managing the rest of the store's operations.

In this free downloadable report—made possible with the support of 86 Repairs—the editorial staff of QSR and FSR dive into the biggest maintenance risks, costs, and issues and help restaurants find the best ways to initiate a robust R&M program that can minimize downtime and disruptions in order to save time and money while reducing strain on labor.

The full-service business is witnessing one of the most transformative periods in its history, and the restaurants capitalizing on the current climate don’t play by accepted rules. Think streamlined menus. Clean, fresh, and craveable food. Adaptable, flexible, and dynamic footprints. Entrepreneurial cultures. Tech-ready and off-premises savvy. Hybrid models unafraid to cross segments.

Just like fast casual, these brands are also serving as change-agents for an entire category, establishing a new standard for employee care, culture, sustainability, vendor relationships, and expansion prospects.

We call it NextGen Casual, and this report dives deep into the defining elements and the actions needed to succeed in NextGen Casual Dining. And it concludes with the brands that Food News Media research has identified as the Top 50 NextGen Casual Dining Restaurants.

The only list you need for buying new products in the year ahead. Our 2022 Buyer's Guide is full of what's hot and what keeps the business running. Look for our favorites, anecdotes from experts, and insightful interviews that back up this year's picks.

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